- PSY 181 Psychology of Adolescence and Maturity
The course will examine a wide range of issues in adolescence; biological changes; cognitive development; parenting styles and family dynamics; moral development; drug abuse; and psychological disorders of adolescence. The issues will be illustrated and developed through the use of several case studies. (Fall, Spring)
- PSY 186 Psychology of Aging
This course is aimed at giving undergraduate students an exposure to the multiple facets of the aging experience within a lifespan developmental perspective. While an overview of the basic research on biological, psychological, and social aspects of aging will be presented, this course will attempt an integration of the material through an exploration through the salient issues faced by the individual elderly person and a society dealing with an increasingly aged population.
- PSY 208 Practicum in Resident Advising and Peer Assistance
This course is intended primarily for resident advisors and peer assistants to have additional opportunity beyond their basic training to explore the developmental stages of young adults (18-24) in a college setting. In order to facilitate the student’s experiential learning and growth as a resident advisor or peer assistant, a variety of developmental models and theorists, such as Maslow, Kohlberg, Gilligan, and Chickering, will be presented and discussed. Course work will include readings, papers, group discussion, and course projects which emphasize practical applications of areas studied. Particular attention will be given to such issues as appropriate peer intervention in crisis situations, referral procedures, substance use/abuse, sexuality, conflict management, and maximizing potential for personal growth during the college years. This course is intended for resident advisors and peer assistants with a special interest in understanding the development of college-age individuals.
- PSY 211 Psychology of Religion
An introduction to the study of the psychology of religion with special emphasis on religious development, religious expressions of psychological problems, perspectives on religious maturity, and the works of C.G. Jung and William James.
- PSY 214 Psychology of Identity and Sexuality
An attempt to understand the individual and collective dimensions of identity from the perspectives of psychology and cultural anthropology, with a special focus on rites of passage into adulthood and marriage in primitive cultures and our culture including the effects of failed rites of passage on identity formation and social structure. With regard to sexual identity, in addition to a focus on how gender issues and gender wounds affect self-image and interpersonal relationships, we will examine issues in sexual development, sexual identity, sexual exploitation, and sexual harassment/abuse. (Spring)
- PSY 215 Psychology of Dreams
This course will begin by studying the physiology and psychology of sleep, sleep disorders, and dreams. We will look at various theories concerning the meaningfulness of dreams from a cross-cultural perspective, including a study of the religious dimensions of dreams. Students will be asked to do an extensive interpretation of several dreams utilizing the various perspectives (Freudian, Jungian, and existential) we have learned in class. (Spring)
- PSY 217 Psychology of Women
This course will acquaint students with the unique experiences and challenges faced by women and girls as they move through the complex process of psychological development. Questions of gender identity, socialization, sex-role stereotyping and self-image will be among he topics discussed. In addition, many of the important roles filled by women throughout the lifespan will be addressed, along with circumstances, such as poverty and domestic violence,that undermine the well-being of women in American society. Primary source material as well as textbook readings will be required along with class presentations, reflective essays, and a biography analysis project, among other assignments.
- PSY 220 Interpersonal Communication (Seminar Course)
This course introduces students to basic theoretical issues, research findings, and practical strategies in the field of interpersonal communication. The course examines the processes through which people collaboratively construct shared understandings in conversation, including discussion of how ideas about the self are shaped and expressed in dialogue with others. Through readings, discussion, and exercises, the class will work towards an understanding of how effective communication patterns, as well as problematic patterns, arise in the course of person-to-person interaction.
- PSY 230 Positive Psychology: Psychology of Well-being
This course explores contemporary research in positive psychology, neuroscience, and psychology of religion on how spirituality (mindfulness, meditation, religion), positive emotions and traits, and humor impact well-being. This course invites students to understand factors that allow an individual to thrive and lead a meaningful and fulfilling life. Students will read both science and non-science sources to understand the neuroscience that lends empirical validation to our understanding of what constitutes a “good life”. Students will also participate in experiential exercises to apply course concepts to their own lives, develop knowledge to live well, and contribute to their communities. This course helps students integrate knowledge across specializations in psychology (positive psychology, psychology of religion, neuroscience) as well as across disciplines (e.g., philosophy and theology). Students will be challenged to think about how the claims of faith can be integrated with and/or compared to science as they explore the complementarity of faith and reason. (Spring)
- PSY 285 Women’s Studies I: Images
This course is an introduction to the study of images of women in American popular culture. Interdisciplinary in approach, the course provides the opportunity to discover the complex nature of the images of women which have appeared and reappeared, primarily in North America, from the 19th century to the present. This course will appraise the experiences of women, emphasize their limited opportunities as well as their many achievements, and examine critically the thinking about women from various perspectives (literary, historical, psychological and sociological). This course will be taught as a CSL course this semester and students will work with the Worcester Women’s Oral History Project interviewing some of Worcester’s own women. (Fall, Spring)
This is the same course as CLT 285, HIS 285, and SOC 285.
- PSY 286 Organizational and Industrial Psychology
A survey of current theory and practice in the field of industrial psychology. Topics covered include personnel issues, leadership, motivation and satisfaction, and communications. Emphasis will be placed on the person in the work environment at all levels. (Spring)
- PSY 295 Psychology of Deviance
This course is concerned with a critical analysis of the meaning of deviance. It examines socially undesirable deviance; for example, mental disorder, white-collar crime, crime in the streets, and juvenile delinquency, as well as social innovation. The theories and research considered will focus on the process whereby an individual in our culture acquires and adjusts to a deviant status, as well as how society defines and reacts to deviance. (Fall, Spring)
- PSY 301 Internship in Psychology (Seminar Course)
This course is designed to give students exposure to the many roles psychologists currently play in the community. Students are expected to spend 8-10 hours per week in a field setting for 13 weeks. This translates into 100 hours of placement time. It is important to have one full day or two half days available to complete the field-based component of the course. In addition, students are required to attend a weekly two-hour seminar. Topics to be discussed in the seminar include ethical standards for psychologists, major treatment modalities, and other issues relevant to the practice of psychology. Prerequisites: Limited to Junior and Senior Psychology majors and minors. (Spring)
Prerequisite: PSY 101
- PSY 309 Common Problems in Childhood (Seminar Course)
Parents and child practitioners often encounter children’s problems that may not necessarily reflect psycho pathology. This course is an in-depth study of the challenges that children face, the guidelines for determining when a behavior is a cause for concern, and how problems can be addressed. Students will explore the psychological, biological, and social roots of difficult phases of development such as difficulty to grow, bed-wetting, problems with sleeping and eating, common anxiety problems and fears, bad habits, and problems in self regulation and social behavior. (Spring)
Prerequisite: PSY 190
- PSY 310 Stereotypes and Prejudice (Seminar Course)
This course will examine the current theories and methodologies focused on understanding stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination. The origins of stereotypes and prejudicial attitudes, and how affective, motivational, and cognitive processes might be involved will be discussed. To explore these issues, the course will examine how stereotypes are assessed, discuss the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches, and present a multi-method approach for assessing stereotypes and prejudice. Topics in the course include: reasons for the persistence and prevalence of stereotypes of prejudice, understanding psychological processes underlying prejudice directed toward a variety of social groups, and possible ways to change group stereotypes or reduce prejudice. Finally, psychology’s current understanding of why people use and apply stereotypes in their everyday behavior and thinking will be investigated. (Spring)
Prerequisite: PSY 210
- PSY 316 Abnormal Child and Adolescent Psychology (Seminar Course)
This course will provide you with an understanding of various forms of psychopathology in children and adolescents. You will receive an overview of the taxonomy of childhood disorders with many videotaped examples of different disorders to help you apply your knowledge to actual cases. Different theoretical models used to explain how psychopathology develops in children will be presented and the role of home and school environment, child gender, ethnicity, culture and socioeconomic status will be explored. In addition to learning about the characteristics of various psychological disorders in youngsters, you are also guided through a review of the research into the causes and outcomes of mental disorders in children and adolescents. Finally, special challenges in diagnosis, assessment, and treatment of psychological disorders in children are highlighted. This seminar-style course includes lectures but heavily emphasizes class discussions, student presentations, and case studies. (Fall)
Prerequisites: PSY 101, PSY 116 and PSY 190
- PSY 325 Clinical Psychology (Seminar Course)
Consideration of the history, problems, and techniques of clinical psychology. Research and theoretical issues related to clinical assessment and different methods of psychotherapy are examined. (Fall, Spring)
Prerequisites: PSY 101, PSY 116
- PSY 399 Independent Study
Open to qualified Junior and Senior Psychology majors with permission of the instructor, the Chairperson, and the Dean of Studies. (Fall, Spring)
Prerequisites: PSY 225, PSY 265
Staff/One to three credits
- PSY 401 Senior Seminar
- PSY 402 Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience (Seminar Course)
The purpose of this course is to explore the exciting world of contemporary social, cognitive, and affective neuroscience. Pioneers in these fields are attempting to answer some of the most perplexing questions in psychology: how does the brain construe meaning out of a world of buzzing sensory signals? How can brain imaging inform our understanding of the psychology of decision-making, stereotyping, and romantic choice? Which brain structures and systems are implicated in states of psychopathology? In this course we will first engage in a solid review of brain anatomy and imaging technologies. Then we will immerse ourselves in the current literature of social, cognitive, and affective neuroscience. (Spring)
Prerequisites: PSY 351 or Permission of Instructor